Bitmain-backed BitFuFu abandons mining rigs in Kazakhstan

The company has shipped new machines to the US to make up for the lost hashrate. BitFuFu is ditching its mining rigs in Kazakhstan and buying new ones from Bitmain and installing them in the US, after weeks of power rationing in the Central Asian country, BitFuFu told CoinDesk on Thursday. Kazakhstan has faced severe electricity shortages, partly due to an influx of crypto miners into the country, but also pre-existing problems with its energy infrastructure. The national grid operator moved to ration electricity to cryptocurrencies in September.

In November, the Energy Ministry assured industry that they would not restrict electricity to legal mines. But the rationing did not stop. Last month, miner Xive shut down a 2,500 rig facility in Kazakhstan due to power shortages. Industry sources estimate that 200MW-500MW of legal mines have been disconnected from the grid.
The new BitFuFu machines have already arrived in the US, a company spokesperson told CoinDesk. The company previously told users that they were facing delays in getting the machines through customs and transporting them to the mines due to the Thanksgiving holiday.

BitFuFu users have been watching their investments idly while the platform’s facilities in Kazakhstan are offline.
One user told CoinDesk that their machines have been completely offline for just over a month, adding that they would leave the platform if they gave their money back. Another said the outages started in mid-October and they are concerned but not angry with the service. Users who spoke to CoinDesk declined to be identified because their contracts with BitFuFu include anti-defamation clauses.

The mining rig acknowledged the problem stemming from Kazakhstan’s power rationing in a Telegram message on October 14, saying it would compensate users by extending their contract as long as their machines have been offline. According to the Financial Times estimates, BitFuFu has 80,000 rigs in Kazakhstan after moving there from China due to the government crackdown on cryptocurrency mining.

A company spokesperson declined to comment on the estimate. The company spokesperson told CoinDesk that they could try to sell their machines in Kazakhstan, but they have not made a decision yet. BitFuFu is a platform that allows users to invest in mining without having to operate the facilities.

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